Over on the Flyertalk forums there is some buzz about two stackable promotions that can turn 50,000 American Express Membership Rewards points into 90,000 Delta SkyMiles and instant Silver elite status (25,000 elite qualifying miles). This is another nice promo for those that fly on Delta, making flying much more enjoyable. Here’s how it works:
First, there is this 30% bonus offer on transfers from AMEX points to Delta miles through 3/31/11. Then, there is a separate 50% bonus offer on first-time transfers from AMEX points to Delta miles through 5/31/11. In addition, if you 50,000 points or more, you’ll also receive 25,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs). This is enough to reach Silver Medallion status and get benefits like waived baggage fees, priority check-in, priority boarding, the ability to select exit row seats in economy class, and free upgrades to first class (based on availability). You’ll have elite status for both the rest of 2011 and all of 2012.
Many people have confirmed that these are stackable, meaning you can get both at the same time. (Update 2/2: Folks have reported that now Delta has changed the wording of the offers slightly so that they shouldn’t stack anymore. If so, you should at least try for the second 50% + elite status offer. 75k isn’t as good as 90k, but it may still be worth it.)
This coincides with the current promotion for the The Platinum Card® from American Express which is offering 40,000 bonus Membership Rewards points for spending $3,000 within 3 months. Thus, if you transfer 25,000 points using the offers above, you’d end up with another 40% extra = 45,000 Delta SkyMiles and Silver elite status. If you value miles at a penny per mile, 90,000 miles is worth $900.
The AMEX Platinum does have a hefty $450 annual fee. Essentially in exchange for $450 you’ll be getting 45,000 miles, elite status, first class lounge access, and also other perks like $200 annually to spend on airline incidentals like baggage fees, ticket fees, and inflight food and beverage. The first class lounge access is valid for you and two companions at American Airlines Admirals Club, Continental Presidents Club, Delta Sky Club, and US Airways Clubs. More details on the perks here.